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Giant Schnauzer
Characteristics, History, and Health

Giant Schnauzer

The Giant Schnauzer, also known as Riesenschnauzer, originated in the 17th century in Germany's Bavaria region. Initially, they were bred for driving cattle and guarding breweries, butcher shops, and farms due to their strength and alert nature1. Their ancestors include the Standard Schnauzer and perhaps the black Great Dane and the Bouvier des Flandres. They were later employed in the police and military roles due to their trainability and protective instincts.

Main Info
Alternate Names
Riesenschnauzer, Munich Schnauzer, Munchener, Russian Bear Schnauzer
Life Expectancy
12-15 years
Average Male Height
25.5-27.5 inches
Average Female Height
23.5-25.5 inches
Average Male Weight
60-85 pounds
Average Female Weight
55-75 pounds
Coat Length
Coat Type
Double, Wiry
Coat Colors
Black, Black & Tan, Fawn, Pepper & Salt
Coat Pattern

Genetic Predispositions and Health

Giant Schnauzers can suffer from osteochondritis dissecans, hypothyroidism, gastric torsion, canine hip dysplasia, dilated cardiomyopathy, hyperuricosuria, progressive retinal atrophy, progressive rod-cone degeneration, coagulation factor VII deficiency, degenerative myelopathy, intestinal cobalamin malabsorption, and neuroaxonal dystrophy.

Personality and Behavior

Giant Schnauzers are intelligent, versatile, and protective dogs. They are known for their intense loyalty and alertness, which makes them excellent guard dogs. They need lots of mental and physical stimulation due to their high energy levels and intelligence. They're generally good with children and can get along well with other animals if properly socialized.

Fun Facts

In World War I and II, Giant Schnauzers were employed as military dogs.

The name 'Schnauzer' originates from the German word 'Schnauze', which means 'muzzle' or 'snout'.

Despite their size, Giant Schnauzers are not considered a 'giant breed' like Great Danes or Mastiffs.